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Old 04-06-2012, 05:34 AM
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Fuel Economy and Maint Questions- Newbie

This is my first post. I am a complete diesel novice. This month I purchased a 2004 F250 Extended Cab 4X4 diesel. I knew that I would be putting significant preventative maintenance money into the truck before I bought it.

According to a knowledgeable diesel mechanic the truck is completely stock. The odometer reads 113,000 miles. The truck had three previous owners and seems to be in excellent condition. The carfax indicates “maintenance inspections” occurred on the dates 2/2005, 3/2006, 7/2008 and 6/2010. The carfax also shows that the vehicle was otherwise serviced regularly.

I live in North Palm Beach in south Florida. The weather has been warm. In the mornings I need to let the truck warm up for five minutes; otherwise it lacks power for the first half mile of driving. After that everything seems ok. I am a slow driver with a light foot.

Combined city/highway fuel economy is currently 8.9 miles per gallon based on 420 miles of driving (50 miles of which were towing a 5000lb boat).
Before I ran the fuel economy numbers I took the truck to a local diesel expert. He said that although his specialty is not Fords (there were a lot of DuraMax’s scattered around his place) he has worked on a lot of them. He has an excellent reputation. We made plans for an egr delete, cleaning of the turbo, replacement of the oil cooler and a few other details I can’t recall. He said that he could “adjust the codes” or something like that but also said that he lacked some computer equipment for the Fords. We do not plan to stud the heads. He suggested an intake and exhaust. I’m waiting for his estimate for all the details.

I’m hoping some of you experienced folks will field the following questions;
1) How confident are you that something can be done to bring the fuel economy up nearer to 12mpg city?
2) What can be done to bring it up?
3) What should I be doing to this truck other than what I have mentioned?
4) Should I be getting a “tuner”? I do not know what the difference is between the AutoEnginuity and something like the Edge tuners. Should I be getting both?
5) Please tell me frankly whether you feel I’ll be successful with the gas mileage I want. If I can’t expect to get 12 city I will sell the truck before doing all this maintenance.

Thank you
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Old 04-06-2012, 05:49 AM
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Finally someone from my neck of the woods, I'm in Boca Raton, just south of you.
I'm going to lump all your questions into one big answer.
You should defiantly be able to get 12MPG city and about 17MPG highway with this truck in stock setup and good running condition, assuming your not towing anything, then it will go down a bit.
First and foremost you need to get a good set of gauges to monitor the health of your engine. The Scangugae II is an excellent option, its not as nice as the Edge Insight CTS but it only costs about $150 and can monitor everything you need it to, if you want to go up the the Insight CTS its about $350, but it looks very nice, color touch screen and everything, it just depends on how much your willing to spend.
Once you have determined if your oil cooler is bad or not using the gauges then you can go ahead and start bullet proofing it. If your oil cooler is good I would go ahead and do a custom SCT tuner ($400) and a 4" turbo back exhaust ($500). You will be amazed by how much a tuner will both help with power but also slightly with MPG as well, as does the exhaust.
If your oil cooler is bad then you need to tear down the engine. New oil cooler, egg delete, update all the other misselanbious parts that Ford has updated over the years, flush out the gold coolant and your good to go.
This was just a brief summary of your options, if you have any questions PM me or email me at mazsecond@hotmail.com Id love to help out!
And as much as I hate dealers Maroone Ford of Delray has an excellent diesel tech. If I had to take my truck in for something thats where I would take it. No mess around with other "mechanics" especially ons that aren't familiar with the 6.0. It is unlike any diesel engines ever made. Good luck and get back to me with more questions.
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Old 04-06-2012, 06:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anthropisces View Post
. . .
I’m hoping some of you experienced folks will field the following questions;
1) How confident are you that something can be done to bring the fuel economy up nearer to 12mpg city?
2) What can be done to bring it up?
3) What should I be doing to this truck other than what I have mentioned?
4) Should I be getting a “tuner”? I do not know what the difference is between the AutoEnginuity and something like the Edge tuners. Should I be getting both?
5) Please tell me frankly whether you feel I’ll be successful with the gas mileage I want. If I can’t expect to get 12 city I will sell the truck before doing all this maintenance.

Thank you
Welcome to the ORG. and the 6.0L Powerstroke. I need a little info about your truck, particularly the axle ratios.

1) I manage around 10-12mpg in town under stock programing a little worse in the winter, that's with a CCLB DRW and 4.30 gears. Your initital 8.9mpg figure is hugely dependent on the towing you did. A lot of it is how you drive, I strive to keep the tach under 2200rpm, and come off the gas to allow the trans to shift. Once a week though, you have to take it out an get at least one WOT run in to keep the turbo and intake healthy.

2) How to bring it up, first is the method of which you drive. Second is to get a free-flowing exhaust on there. (A single 4" Turbo back is all you need with a 3.5" or 4" DP). What tires are you running, size and model will make a difference?

3) Regular maintenance is the key to the 6.0L. You also need to invest in a monitor like the Edge Insight either CS or CTS model, and monitor your coolant and oil temps. This is critical to prevent the oil cooler from destroying your truck. A 15* delta at 65mph on the interstate is the threshold for a coolant flush and oil cooler rebuild. I short cycle oil changes to 6k miles to prevent injector wear, unless you're running synthetic.

4) Tuning, after you get the monitor and see where the truck is sitting. Also, do not go for any tuner that is shift-on-the-fly with the 5R110 transmission. These rely on the transmission re-learn components to adapt to the new powerbands. You will want an SCT tuner, with custom tuning to your trucks strategy and modifications from one of the trusted tuners on this site (PM me for more info on this or anything else 6.0L performance related).
With the SCT tunes, those recalibrate the transmission, are not SOTF, and are very successful here. The higher the HP tune, with a responsible right foot, and you can see as much as a 15% improvement on fuel economy (I have the numbers to prove that).

5) You should be able to reach 12 mpg in the city with a SRW and 3.73 geared truck without any issues, if you maintain and drive the truck accordingly.

Enjoy the new ride.
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Old 04-06-2012, 06:34 AM
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I'm not sure what my gear ratio is. At 56mph this morning I think my tach read about 1600 rpms. I'm running 275/70 R18 tires.

Last edited by anthropisces; 04-06-2012 at 06:46 AM.
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Old 04-06-2012, 06:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anthropisces View Post
I'm not sure what my gear ratio is. At 56mph this morning I think my tach read about 1600 rpms. I'm running 275/70 R18 tires.
If you look on the rear end diff cover there will be a tag that'll tell you. Should say 3L73 if its 3.73 IIRC
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Old 04-06-2012, 08:56 AM
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The differentials are 373
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Old 04-06-2012, 10:22 AM
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If it takes that long to warm up you might need the rev-x / t6 combo (search them on here....1000000000 post about it)
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Old 04-06-2012, 10:57 AM
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I'd suggest checking your ficm voltage too.

Sent from my HTC Hero S
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Old 04-06-2012, 06:37 PM
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I'm getting it that I need to get the Edge Insight CTS (or other gauges) before I do anything. Where (from who) should I buy it to get a good deal? Is it difficult to install the thing?

I've been trying to schedule an EGR delete at which time we thought we'd also do a new oil cooler. Now I'm not so sure about the order of how I'm scheduling things. I'm reading on this site that a coolant flush should be done BEFORE the oil cooler. If not, it seems that the new cooler can get immediately clogged.

I want to get that EGR delete done before it messes something up. It does seem to make sense to do the oil cooler at the same time. But I also want to do things in a logical order.

Can someone suggest a logical series of steps to take? I'm looking for something like this; 1) get gauges, 2)flush coolant system 3) put in a coolant filter 4) replace egr and oil cooler....

What are the logical steps for me to take in light of the fact that I want to get that EGR taken care of and that I need to get on this poor mileage issue?

Thanks
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Old 04-06-2012, 06:56 PM
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Edge Insight is the preferred method, as it can read things standard gauges cannot, like FICM Voltage. It can also pull and clear DTCs. I run a analog gauge and Insight combination, due primarily preferring the look of gauges, and having curtain parameters monitored without computer intervention. The Edge Insight will handle everything needed for the 6.0L.

I think you should start with the following thread, we've got a great breakdown on things:
Write Up: Bullet-Proofing the 6.0L PSD.

Let us know what you have on your mind after that.
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